I finally did it - after at least a year of thinking about it, I finally purchased a pair of Loop Earplugs*. What made me finally do it? 5 weeks of camping, and needing earplugs to sleep, 1 week of assisting a group of teens with additional needs and learning more about sensory overstimulation, 1 day back at home trying to work with 3 kids around!
Don't get me wrong, being a parent is a wonderful journey, filled with unforgettable moments of joy, love, and laughter. But let's face it – I can also find it a bit overwhelming, especially when the noise levels reach an all-time high. From the stomps of feet on the stairs, to the exuberant shrieks of excitement (via the shouting match over who had THAT toy first), a parent's life is truly a symphony of sound. If, like me, you find that the noise is just one bit of stimulation too much, this symphony can sometimes become a cacophony that leads to stress and fatigue. Enter loop earplugs – the unexpected hero in helping parents maintain their sanity while navigating the joyful chaos of parenthood.
Sensory Processing: The Key to Understanding
Before we delve into the world of loop earplugs, and how I'm getting on with them, let's talk about sensory processing. Our sensory system is like a complex orchestra, playing various instruments that allow us to perceive and interpret the world around us. While most of us can tune out background noises and focus on what's important, some individuals, including both parents and children, might find it challenging to filter out excess stimuli. This is known as sensory processing sensitivity.
Imagine trying to hold a conversation with your partner while your toddler practices their newfound talent of banging on pots and pans. Or attempting to concentrate on cooking dinner amidst a chorus of excited giggles from a playdate. These situations can lead to sensory overload, causing stress and even impacting the overall mood of the household.
If you want to know more about sensory processing, then my friend Munira is the one to follow, over on Instagram. I'm just trying to share what I've learnt from her, and from the experience of both my family, and my clients' families.
Loop Earplugs: A Sanctuary of Serenity
This is where my loop earplugs have come to the rescue. Designed with comfort and functionality in mind, loop earplugs offer a discreet and effective solution for parents who are seeking a balance between being present for their children and maintaining their own well-being.
So yes, I'm now the proud owner of some Loop Engage earplugs. (For info, I'm an Amazon associate, so If you click on the image/purchase using any links in this article, then this may result in me earning a commission.)
So far I find they are taking the 'edge' off the noise, rather than blocking it entirely. That's because I chose the engage version. My next purchase might well be the Loop 'Quiet'! (looks like these are the softest, so would work best for sleep too.
Let's explore some of the ways loop earplugs have been helping me keep calmer this week: (Disclaimer, I've only had them a week, and only 2 of my 3 kids are at home!!)
Customized Sound Filtering: Loop earplugs are not about blocking out noise entirely; they're about fine-tuning the noise you do and don't hear. These earplugs are equipped with advanced technology that filters out loud, jarring noises while allowing you to stay connected to conversations and essential sounds. This means you can still hear your child's requests or cries without feeling overwhelmed by the constant barrage of noise. Don't ask me exactly how they do it, but so far they're great. The shout becomes tolerable, and I can still hear when my child is next to me, talking in a small voice, asking for something.
Regulation of Sensory Input: For parents with sensory sensitivities, managing a child's boundless energy/noise can be particularly challenging. Loop earplugs act as a regulator, allowing you to create a comfortable auditory environment for yourself. By reducing the impact of sensory overload, you can stay calm and collected, making it easier to handle the unexpected twists and turns of parenthood. But watch out, the noise inside your head becomes 'louder' - so take them out if you are going to eat crunchy baguette!!!
Staying connected: Parenthood is all about forging connections with your children. With loop engage earplugs, you can engage in meaningful conversations without feeling distracted or frazzled by external stimuli. By keeping your sensory sensitivities in check, you can fully enjoy those moments of connection without the constant stress of overstimulation.
Parenthood is an incredible journey, and finding strategies to navigate its challenges while preserving your own well-being is of paramount importance. I cannot stress this enough - when coaching my clients, my emphasis is always going to be a balance of parenting self-care and child well being - because when we do better, they do too. Loop earplugs are not a miracle solution, but they might offer you a way of staying regulated in the midst of the delightful chaos that parenting often brings. By understanding your sensory processing needs and embracing tools that help you manage them, you're not just enhancing your own quality of life but also creating a more harmonious atmosphere for your entire family.
So, next time you're chasing after a runaway toy while trying to decipher your child's latest knock-knock joke, remember that loop earplugs can be your trusted companion in maintaining a sense of calm and balance. Embrace the symphony of parenthood with open arms, and let loop earplugs help you find the serene melody within.
PS - want to reduce the volume levels in your house long-term? Connect with me for a chat about parent coaching.
Disclaimer: This blog post is intended for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice. If you have concerns about sensory processing or any other health-related matters, please consult a qualified healthcare professional.
* I'm an Amazon associate, and may earn a commission from purchases you make by following links in this article.